Wednesday, May 12th, 2010
A Personal Note from John Smid
A good friend asked me what motivated me in ministry. I shared with her some things that really tugged at my heart.
The modern American “church” is typically known as people who gather in buildings on Sunday morning for teaching, singing, and smiling about life.
I see it more as a collection of those who have embraced their own frailties, and have received the offer of grace through the salvation gift from Jesus Christ. These are members of the church and are in need of healthy connection to the Body of Christ.
However, some people are missing in action. There are events, circumstances, and personal wounds and choices that can bring someone to a place where they do not feel welcome to gather with others of like faith. Sometimes people experience rejection from others or they are consumed with shame and may find themselves alone and unsupported, Some of these folks may become susceptible to seeking connections outside of those who can encourage them towards growth in their faith and in making healthy decisions.
In some of these cases it may be desirable to reach out to these individuals and imperative to do so in safe one on one meetings to build a relationship based on honesty, active listening, and respect. This takes time and certainly a leading of God due to the sensitive nature of the individual’s fears and concerns. Without an outcome agenda, these meetings must contain a neutral stance on standards that come from perceived performance expectations. God’s standards are complete perfection and therefore, no person will reach that standard this side of heaven in human experience. Therefore, we are all on a journey and it is really important for us to seek ways to support those who are faltering or feel intimidated by large gatherings of believing Christians.
As the leading is present, making the effort to invest time and effort to build relationships with those around us will hopefully provide the safe atmosphere necessary to build a bridge from the lost, forsaken, and alone – to relationships, growth, and peace in a life with Christ that is rewarding and fulfilling.
Grace Rivers features a specific selection of concepts and core relational values that will help to guide relationships into building honest, listening, respectful connections. It is called The Journey of Thomas. This material can be reviewed in as little as one hour and thoroughly explored in an eight hour seminar format.
There is no lack of need for reaching those who are lost and afraid. The time is of the essence, there are lives at stake that desperately need a touch from a caring friend.
If you find this ministry vision something you resonate with and you aren’t already involved in Grace Rivers, we invite you to join us. Reaching those in need of a friend who can help is what we do. We hope you feel the same way.
Several people invested in my life to bring me back.
John J. Smid